SHEFFIELD UNITED: Scots ready to stand firm over deal for David Wotherspoon

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HIBERNIAN have no intention of selling Blades target David Wotherspoon for a cut-price fee as manager Pat Fenlon continues to overhaul his squad ahead of the new Scottish Premier League campaign.

Wotherspoon, whose situation at Easter Road is being monitored by Sheffield United, has been told he still has a future with last season’s SFA Cup finalists despite being controversially omitted from the team beaten by arch-rivals Hearts.

Danny Wilson, Fenlon’s counterpart at Bramall Lane, will keep a watching brief on developments surrounding the under-21 international before deciding whether to make an official approach.

But any bid would be met with stiff resistance from Hibernian who yesterday made Partick Thistle’s Paul Cairney their third summer signing.

Wotherspoon is contracted to the four-time champions until 2014 but would be tempted to explore the possibility of a move to England if first-team opportunities are not forthcoming.

He has started only one of Hibernian’s last seven SPL matches and failed to make the bench at Hampden Park.

Fenlon’s employers reportedly stand to lose around £250,000 by refusing to back Rangers ‘newco’s’ efforts to gain election back to the SPL.

Meanwhile, Hibernians, one of United’s prospective opponents during their forthcoming visit to Malta, have won the Euro Cup.

The tournament, a traditional curtain-raiser to the BOV Premier League season, also featured Valletta, Birkirkara and Floriana.

United are holding talks with the Maltese FA aimed at filling two vacant friendly dates later this month.

But negotiations have been complicated by the fact that all of the Euro Cup entrants are involved in the qualifying rounds of either the UEFA Champions League or the UEFA Europa League.